About Blog Title...

As a child, it was one of my greatest delights to visit my grandparents in the spring when the whip-poor-wills began to call. Grandma and Grandpa lived in a remote valley of the Ozark Mountains where there were trees a plenty, and, seemingly, a whip-poor-will, or two, in each one.
My grandmother insisted that a whip-poor-will's call was not "whip-poor-will," but instead, "chip-butter-white-oak." I would listen really hard trying to hear it exactly as she said it was, but all I could hear was "whip-poor-will, whip-poor-will,..." But, I never let on to her.
I remember my grandpa watching and listening, with an amused look on his face, to one of these listening sessions. Shortly after that he began to call me, just for fun, "Chip Butter." It is a name I am proud to wear for I still love to hear that long, lonesome call on a warm summer's eve. And, sometimes, when I listen really, really hard, it seems I can hear quite clearly, "chip-butter-white-oak, chip-butter-white-oak..."

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Abstract Art?

No, it's ice.  A couple of days ago, when I was out early taking frosty morning pictures, I noticed that there was ice in Nell's water bucket.  The ice was broken up, probably by Nell, and floating on the water.  Just for the heck of it, I zoomed my lens in and took a couple of shots.  Later, when I was looking at the pictures I had taken, I was completely blown away by the beautiful colors and designs I had captured . 
Somewhere back in senior science, I remember something about reflecting and refracting light.  There were even some strange formulas to remember, which I don't, but I am thinking those formulas must have something to do with this masterpiece of abstract art. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

To Everything There Is a Season...

To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven.  ~Ecclesiastes 3:1    

Monday, November 12, 2012

You Will Be Missed...

I know it is time for the show to be over, but I am never quite ready.  We have been through so much together, you and I...weeks and weeks without rain, and blistering hot days, and grasshoppers...  Then, when rain began to fall once again, you seemed to want to outdo yourself, to show the world how beautiful you could be.  Yes, you will be missed.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

Cattle Trails...

A most welcome rain has been falling today, making for a wonderful day to relax and stay inside (after  the outside work was finished) where we were quite happy and content.  One of our little pleasures is watching the cattle on their trail that runs behind our house. When the weather is stormy or rainy, the cattle move to the upper pastures, I assume, because of some natural instinct.  They walk one behind the other, single file, in a procession.  There is one cow who always goes first.  I wonder how she gained this status, whether self-appointed (which I suspect), or if elected by the other cattle.  Not only is it pleasurable to watch the cattle parade by, but a time to make sure the count is correct and to note the general health of each.   Now, there are some exceptions to the single file rule...the calves.  They often come frolicking along together, kicking up their hills in their play, usually not along side their mothers at all.  They are curious, as youngsters usually are, and sometimes stop to nibble and lick on the fence.  If they see us in the yard or through the windows, they stop to stare as though they enjoy watching us as much as we enjoy watching them.  I am thankful that I have the camera, and they do not.

Today, the calves didn't seem to mind the rain, and took time to stare at a visitor who was parked in the driveway.

And, another decided, despite the rain, that it was time for a warm frothy drink.

Saturday, November 10, 2012


Why are there trees I never walk under but large and melodious thoughts descend upon me?  ~Walt Whitman

Friday, November 9, 2012

Where go the years?

Down what tunnel of time are poured the precious days?  ~ Louis L'Amour                                      

Monday, November 5, 2012

A Different Perspective...

A few days ago I was up here, at a little more than 2200 feet, with my camera looking down. 

Yesterday I was down here (my own back yard), at about 850 feet, with my camera looking up.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Hunter's Moon...

According to Wikipedia, the Hunter's Moon is said to have been used by Native Americans as they tracked and killed their prey by autumn moonlight, stockpiling food for the winter ahead.  As with the Harvest Moon, there is no long period of darkness between sunset and moonrise.  In times past, this feature of these autumn moons was said to help hunters tracking their prey (or in the case of the Harvest Moon, farmers working in the fields).  They could continue tracking their prey (or bringing in their crops) by moonlight even when the sun had gone down.  Hence the name Hunter's (or Harvest) Moon.


Sunday, October 28, 2012

To the Top...

The weather was perfect this weekend for a drive to the top of the mountain just to look and enjoy.  I almost filled up my camera card, and it was the hardest thing to choose just two or three photos to post here.  At the higher elevations, leaves were beginning to pile up on the ground, quite deep in places, so these colors won't last long.  The drive along the mountain top always makes me feel somewhat dizzy, a bit of acrophobia I suppose, so I was glad when we were on lower ground.  I enjoyed best driving through the jungle of color where the trees reached out their long arms to keep us safe, and there was beauty all around.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Color Along the Bluff...

There was some nice fall color along the bluff when we were there a few days ago, but the peak won't happen for another week or so.  Hopefully, I will get another opportunity to get out with my camera, and if I am lucky, I just might get another shot of the bluff when the color is at its best. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Clicking and Stitching...

Fall has taken me by the hand and keeps leading me away from my work.  She keeps luring me, with my camera around my neck, to go here and there where I might get a closer look at a tree of gold or red on the mountainside...click, click!  Darkness comes earlier each day, so the daylight hours get away all too quickly.  I must hurry for there are other things waiting.  On the sewing table a robe for Father Christmas and a bag for him to carry are waiting to be stitched.

  I meant to do my work today,
But a brown bird sang in the apple tree,
And a butterfly flitted across the field,
And all the leaves were calling me.
And the wind went sighing over the land,
Tossing the grasses to and fro,
And a rainbow held out its shining hand,
So what could I do but laugh and go?
~Richard Le Gallienne

This is the view just past our driveway heading north.

Monday, October 22, 2012

The Creek...

We were afraid autumn might pass us by this year because of the hot, dry summer, but here she is parading up and down the hillsides and into the valleys.  This weekend the weather was just perfect to get out and enjoy some of the quiet beauty of autumn.


Friday, October 19, 2012

An Ill Wind...

The tally of trees killed by this summer's drought continues to grow.  The oaks along the higher ridges seem to have been hit the hardest.  Many of these trees are still holding fast to their leaves, though now withered and brown.  Mother Nature, the greatest of Master Gardeners, has done her work of thinning the forests this year.  She can't be second guessed, but we will surely miss these magnificent oaks.  There will be an abundance of fuel for the wood stove for years to come.  "There never was an ill wind that didn't blow some good," my mother used to say.


Friday, October 12, 2012

Rusty and Wet...

Today has been a drippy, stay inside kind of day; love a rainy day!.

Friday, October 5, 2012

An Old Bucket of Asters and Sylvester...

When the last fire was built in the wood heater last spring, there were only two lengths of firewood remaining on the porch.  Sylvester claimed the wood for his own, and it became his favorite place to sharpen his claws.  The wood was left on the porch all summer, and definitely shows a lot of wear and tear.  Today, he was eager to demonstrate his claw-sharpening techniques...

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

A "New" Old Iron Kettle...

From my early memories I know there was a large and a small iron kettle, one or both of which Mother used to render lard at hog-killing time.    I have only a vague memory of her boiling clothes in the large kettle, before she got her first washing machine.  I do not remember the kettle in the photos below.  There was already a hole in the kettle, so there is no guilt on my part for using it as a planter.

I have also been Nell-proofing the borders on the east side of the house where she likes to dig a nice cool and comfortable hole to lie in when the days are hot.  If you look closely, you should be able to see rusty net wire fencing laying flat on the ground, most of which is covered with mulch.  I found most of the old fencing on the place, just remnants of fences that were once here.  I cut them in sections from 18 to 24 inches wide and from four to five feet long, a nice size for situating among the plants. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Nature's Bounty...

While the wild critters reap the harvest from nature's bounty, we enjoy its beauty.


Monday, September 17, 2012

Trees and Art...

Probably the only thing I remember from my college freshman art class, Introduction to Art 101, is the instructor's admonishment to the class, "I don't want to see any trees in your work.  If I want to see a tree, I will go outside."  Why do I still remember this after all these years? 

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Late Summer Days...

Am I begging them to stay?  Probably not...But for this one late summer day, it was glorious...the beauty of blue and green all around.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Through the Sewing Room Window...

The little garden area outside the sewing room window had a rough time of it this summer; definitely time for a fresh new look.  Grasshoppers and heat had taken a toll on most of the perennials, while the grasses seemed to thrive as long as water from the hose kept coming.  I decided to move out the old mowing machine and in its place lay a stone path from flat stones, which I gathered from a stream bed on the place.  Dan's only job in the project was to move the old mower; a job for the tractor. 

So, there was a different view from the sewing room window this morning.  A new doll (a work in progress), inside the window, who has been measuring up to Jubal, seems pleased with what he sees (through temporary eyes penciled in; always give my dolls eyes right away). 

The old mower now sets farther down the hill near a persimmon tree and a stack of rocks from an old barn foundation.   (Removing the rocks has been an on-going project.  The older Dan and I get, the heavier the rocks seem to be.)  The old International Harvester No. 9 seems to belong there as though  waiting for an old farmer to hook up the team for a day's work mowing hay.